For makeup artists, being competent in enhancing a variety of eye shapes is essential. But many professionals say that monolids are the most challenging to master of all.
Monolids are the opposite of double eyelids. More specifically, if you can’t see a crease above the upper-lash-line when your eyes are open, then it’s likely you’re looking at a pair!
On a personal note, when I was a (metallic-makeup-obsessed) teenager, my monolids were the bane of my life! I envied my double-lidded friends who experimented with a range of shadow finishes, techniques and formulas – while I truly grappled to find any technique that complimented my shape.
The struggle is real. According to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, a blepharoplasty (also known as double eyelid surgery) is the most popular plastic surgery procedure in the world. In 2014, 1.43 million went under the knife to rid their lack of lid.
While the thought of defined, shimmery cut-creases still excites me, I now embrace my eye shape. The techniques dedicated to beautifying East-Asian monolids are increasingly accessible and some are life-changing.
Philip Luque, director of hair and education at Youngblood Cosmetics, is a master in making up Asian faces. I’ve found his tutorials, in particular, very useful and comprehensive.
“Asian/monolid eyes are one of the most common eye shapes people tend to ask questions about,” he says. “Although they come in many different shapes and forms – the most common characteristic is the lack of a crease or fold on the lid which can make the lid look flat.
“The object for Asian eyes is to make them appear larger and more open. A crease may be present on an Asian eye or it may not. If not try to feel for the bone in the lid and use that as a guide line.”
He shares two easy monolid makeup tutorials with SPA+CLINIC:
- Start by applying the a Stay Put Eye Shadow Base all over the mobile part of the lid and up to the brow area. This is crucial due to the folds in lid and how they’re prone to creasing. Apply the shade Heaven from the Pressed Mineral Eyeshadow Quad in Desert Dreams all over the shadow base to set and to help the other shadows to blend well.
- Going above the crease or where the bone is, apply the medium shade Sultry from the Desert Dreams quad to the outer corner of the lid with the Blending brush and blend into the lighter colour mid eye or all the way to the inner eye if desired.
- Next take the Crease/Smudge brush and the shade Terracotta from the quad, and make a “V” shape in the corner of the eye blending into your medium shade colour.
- Apply a dark liner the lash line. Thinner on the inside getting thicker towards the outer corner. Do the same for the lower lash line too.
- Start with a dark liner shade like brown or black and apply to the upper and lower lash lines. Eye-Mazing Gel Liner in Espresso or Eclipse works the best and will not crease. Smudge it in an outward motion.
- Apply the shade Sable on top to smoke it out even more, then blend outwards.
- Once blended, use the Blending Brush to apply Terracotta from the eyeshadow quad, around the edge of the Sable making sure to raise it upwards in the outer corner to open the eye. The lower lash line should be brought down too in the outer corner.
- Apply the shade Heaven from the quad to highlight under the brow.
*Philip has been bringing out the beauty in women and men for many years, 10 of which he has for Youngblood Cosmetics. His talents have allowed him to travel all over the world and his diverse background includes TV, film, music videos. He has worked with top designers such as Carolina Herrera, Armani, GUESS?, Proenza Schouler, Chris Benz, Diesel, Karigam and others for NY and LA Fashion Week. Philip’s artistry has appeared in the pages of Italian Vogue and W, at the Emmys, SAG, and ESPY award shows, and on the faces of celebrities and sports stars.